Sublime Sunday Part Three – One Photo per Day Challenge

This Sunday mainly consisted of me spending time with my husband after being away for a week without him so this post is much shorter than my previous Sublime Sunday posts.

We decided that we would make a start on our Wedding Invites but it took us almost all day to do four! Clearly I’ve been quite ambitious with the design given that every single element of each invite is handmade, cut and stuck together. I’ll post some pictures etc. in a couple of weeks once the invites have been sent out – I don’t want to ruin any surprises for our guests who read the blog too!

In my post My 2015 Bucket List I said that I would be writing down one thing that made me smile each day and taking a photo of something interesting or something that I liked each day. As I’m not ready to share the wedding invites on here yet I’ve decided that I’ll share my one photo each day pictures that I’ve collected so far. I’ve decided to put them up on my Instagram account today and will be adding to them each day from now on (you can follow me here). I’ve picked a few of my favourites and posted them below to give you an idea of what’s on my Instagram account, hope you enjoy.

As for the rest of my Sublime Sunday, my plan is to cook dinner, watch a film in bed and try not to think about how much I’m dreading going back to work tomorrow!

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Fabulous February

Woohoo! January is finally over! OK, January wasn’t actually too bad but the 1st February always feels full of hope. It brings a sense of relief that January is over and you made it through. There’s also that sense of achievement that you’ve kept your New Years Resolutions for a whole month and, if you managed that, there’s no stopping you now. Although February is much colder than January, February feels so much closer to spring which is SO exciting! I absolutely love spring.

February itself promises to be a good month. For a start there’s Valentines Day (yuk!) and then there’s the miserable cold, wet weather. Joking aside, my February looks like it’s going to be fabulous. I’ve made a good start on my Bucket List and, I have to say, writing down one thing that makes me smile and taking one photo every day is really making me appreciate the small things that happen – that lovely warm latte on a cold morning, a WhatsApp message from a friend you haven’t seen for a while, a roast dinner with your little sister. I’m really looking forward to what February will bring me to smile about.

For the time being, I’ve just been writing the things that make me smile down in my blogging notebook that I take everywhere with me but I was in Paperchase last week (yep, that’s another trip to my favourite shop!), I found these gorgeous sticky notes in the Valentines Day section of the shop.

Paperchase's finest

I bought them not knowing what I’d do with them but I’ve a brilliant idea that, at the end of this year, I’m going to write the things that have made me happy each day on them and put them all into a huge picture frame in a collage with some of the photos I’m taking each day. I think it will be a wonderful way to remind me of the small things that make me happy and to remind me that, even when I’m not writing the things that make me smile down, there will always be at least one thing each day that is worthy of a smile.

Totally in love with these sticky notes

In only 3 days I will be heading off on my first ski trip (which will be one thing I can tick off from my Bucket List). I’m going away without my husband for a whole week of snow, mountains, fresh air, coffee, hot chocolate, beer and some me time. That, and my cousin’s wedding! For the first time in years I’ve bought actual books made from actual paper (as opposed to e-books). I know I’m a massive geek, but I’m really looking forward to having some time to read whilst I’m away. I’m going to take my notebook and hopefully do a bit of writing too. I’m excited about all of the photo opportunities that I’ll have so I’m going to take my good camera as well as my GoPro for some action shots. To top it all off, I’m going to get some quality time with members of my family who I don’t see as much as I’d like to.

February's reading list

I’m also hoping that February will be a good month for the job hunt *fingers crossed* and also for the charities that I’m working with at the moment. The Raising Hope Foundation are finalising the dates for this year’s summer school and I’m hoping to start some fundraising elements of the Charity Apprentice with KOP.

Having written this post, I’ve noticed that I’m going to have lots of exciting blogs to post this month too which is nice as yesterday I was lacking motivation and inspiration so didn’t blog at all (forced blog posts are the worst!)

What are you looking forward to in February? Do you have a trip or holiday coming up? Maybe you’re about to start reading a new book too?

I’ll be sure to blog about my holiday in Switzerland once I’m home (although I’m hoping to do a couple of posts whilst I’m there too).

Being a Grown Up: A Child’s Perspective vs Reality

Me as a child with my careers advisor

When I was younger I imagined that by 26 I would have my dream job, I’d own my own home, I’d be married, I’d have a couple of dogs and maybe thinking about children! I’d get up early and run around the park near to my house (of course, it would always be sunny too!), I’d have home made smoothies for breakfast, work 9-5 in a job I enjoyed every single minute of, I would go out to lunch with my friends who would compliment me on my ever changing new outfits, we would eat salads and drink wine. I’d return home to a house that was always tidy but still homely and spend my evenings with my dogs and husband or out with friends in swanky cocktail bars. And of course, it goes without saying, I would always have money.

Even when I got to University, I figured I would graduate with a first, complete the LPC and walk into a training contract at a firm that does Human Rights, then I’d just simply get a job at the UN or somewhere similar.

Graduation day

Young Dani was a fool! The reality is, I have no idea what I want to do with my life, let alone actually know what my “ideal job” is. I’m in far too much debt to even consider buying a house any time soon and without your own property, pets are out of the question. Running outside is flipping hard work and I don’t live anywhere near a park. It always rains in Manchester, no matter what time of year it is. I drink smoothies, but not the yummy tasty kind, the kind that’s full of green veg and tastes like “green” purely because I don’t eat enough fruit and veg otherwise. I never, ever work 9-5 and I haven’t bought new clothes in months. My flat is always a mess and swanky cocktail bars are overrated anyway.

The thing I’ve learnt is that your fixed plans don’t work. Dreams are good and having goals to work towards give you passion and drive but you’ve just got to go where the road takes you. If, by 26, I had everything that junior me had thought of, there’s no way I would have achieved half of the stuff I did last year – I know one thing’s for sure, there’s no way I would have got to the top of Kilimanjaro if I was pregnant and dragging two french bulldogs behind me! Sure, I don’t run around a nice sunny park every morning but I have run a marathon through the streets of Paris. And, just so there is no confusion, I’d take a beer over a cocktail any day.

Enjoying a beer in Copenhagen

It sounds cheesy but being a “grown up” to me is about taking each moment as it comes and doing whatever feels right at the time. Keep challenging yourself and pushing yourself to do more. I still haven’t finished learning, every day brings something new to my life (Yesterday, I learnt from a colleague, that black ice could kill us all – I’m not really sure if this is true but it might be! And today, I learnt why you can’t give blood if you’ve had a transfusion) I’ve just completed a course in events management and I’m three-quarters of the way through a course on Twitter and Facebook Marketing for small businesses. Why? Well, why not? There’s so much in this world to be explored why not open as many doors as possible, you never know when you might need those skills, or those friends.

Last year I read “Yes Man!” by Danny Wallace and, although it’s pretty comical, it has a good underlying idea – just say yes – which is the complete opposite of everything you were told as a child. In fact, I’m quite sure that the“Just say no” campaign was quite successful in the 80’s and 90’s. I’m going to go out on a limb here and say forget that campaign.

If you want to do something, just do it. You might not get another chance. I wish younger me had known these things and I’d been more of a “Yes man” growing up but who knows, things might have worked out differently and I might have been someone entirely different. I’d definitely recommend this book to anyone looking for a positive outlook and a good read!